Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My Journey: Part 3

God as Jesus

Why is it that the person and character of Jesus can be so much easier to relate to?

I can actually recall a specific moment where the cross and the death of Jesus made more sense to me. My family and I were at a Christian film festival one Easter weekend. I have no idea what film we watched, but afterwards the pastor of the church hosting the event presented the gospel and spoke of the cross in a way that my nine year old self had never heard. He said that for each time the nails were driven into Jesus' hands and feet, one of my sins was forgiven. Like "BANG! Lying." Or "BANG! Disobeying your parents." Now I know it sounds trivial and not theologically correct or whatever, but it was my first realization of what Jesus did for me personally. And after being dead for a good, long time, he actually became alive again! He fought death and won. Just for me. So I went up at the alter call and repeated a prayer to accept God’s forgiveness and "ask Jesus into my heart." Of course that phrase didn't really have any effect on me until later in my life.

It's not like the world looked different to me at that moment, or that I felt like a new person, or even that I changed everything about my behavior immediately after that, but I can confidently say that was when I became saved, because that was the first moment that Jesus' death and resurrection actually meant something to me.

I was baptized on Easter of the following year; my first public announcement of my relationship with Jesus. Thankfully, my church provided a Sunday school class for fifth graders to learn about and understand baptism before actually going through with it. I look back with the knowledge I have now, and know that my baptism is not what saved me, and sadly, not all the kids I was baptized with were actually saved. I was baptized as an act of obedience and as a public (kind of public, it was just all of our families really no more than like 50 people J) declaration of my faith in Jesus.

More to come!

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